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Legend of the Forest

Japan, 1987 (MIFF 1995, Buried Treasures – Osamu Tezuka)

Director: Osamu Tezuka

The second major work Tezuka produced as a reflection on the art, craft and history of animation (the first being Pictures at an Exhibition). Legend of the Forest is formally dedicated to walt Disney, and conveys Tezuka's ongoing theme of the importance and value of life in all its forms. Told exclusively with music and no dialogue, the progression of the plot develops in tandem with a sequence of stylistic changes which reflect a micro-history of animation: from early negative line-drawings to Windsor McCay's comic-style simplicity, to early Disny Silly Symphony figuration, to Disney's later fleshy renderings of the postwar modernist styles of Tex Avery and so on. The closing of Legend...also contains a self-reflective 'battle' of sorts between the innocent animal - drawn in full animation style- to the evil humans depicting through the limited animation technique ( the use of fewer cells) which has governed TV animation around the world since the mid-50s.

See also...

Astro Boy

Japan, 1966
The TV series that started it all, from the infiltra­tion of Japanese style into Western TV anima­tion to the tradition of cartoon robots still strong in Japanese amine today. The success of … More »

Kimba The White Lion

Japan, 1954
The 3rd TV series Tezuka created with Mushi, Kimba was the first colour anime series made in Japan. Highly memorable for Australian kids who saw it during its early 70s broadcast, Kimba con­taine… More »

Princess Knight

Japan, 1956
Acknowledged as the first anime for girls (and indirectly leading to some of the most mind-boggling gender-specific girls titles {shojo manga & anime} which have proliferated in Japan over the procee… More »

Marvelous Melmo

Japan, 1971
If Princess Knight sounds wiid, Marvelous Melmo is all the more so because Tezuka's intentions were that this TV series function as sex educa­tion for young children. Never released in the west-n… More »

Remake of Astro Boy

Japan, 1968
Technically referred to as the Remake Of Astro Boy this series features a karaoke disco version of the theme (true to the Japanese theme but with English words). Many changes are evident in this slic… More »

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